Quarter Lifer

Quarter Lifer


Home Sweet Home

Somedays you can't help but love where you live....

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Stupid People In Large Groups Are Dangerous

I avoid shopping on weekends like the plague.

Mostly to avoid commiting several acts of homicide in one day. The weekend is some sort of dinner bell for the stupid masses to all come out at once, drive 10 mph under the speed limit & generally fuck up my day. When I run errands on the weekend I usually have a list. I just want to get my shit & get back to the safety of my house. When I can not do my shit in a timely fashion I get rather aggitated.

So I have devised a theory:
- Weekend shoppers are actually cults of stupid people meeting up with 'their kind'.

- Christmas shopping is their annual stupid people convention.

I'm pretty sure the convention motto is "Huh?"

Case in point:

Last weekend my aunt called me to help her fix her computer. This is one of my least favorite activities for several reasons:
1) She still uses AOL Dial up & wonders why her computer is always jammed full of spyware.
2) She always wants me to fix her chat monitoring software - Sorry, I have moral issues with
spying on kids who haven't done anything wrong.
3) She insists on writing down everything I do even though she could never replicate the processes herself. This adds at least an hour to my visits.

In order to make the dreaded house call more worthwhile I decided to pick up some laptop speakers from Compusa. I know exactly what I want. There is no good reason for this to be more than a 10 minute endeavor. I allowed enough time to get to Comp, grab the speakers & make it to my aunt's house by 4pm on Sunday. I was in line at approximately 3:45. I would continue to stand in line behind exactly one patron for the next 20 minutes.

How is this possible considering my flawless planning you ask? BECAUSE I WAS IN LINE BEHIND THE MOST FUCKING INEPT SHOPPER IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND!

The man in front of me had exactly 5 items (3 crappy routers, a pair of headphones & a single can of air). Do you know why I distinctly remember the number of items? Because he insisted on having each item rung up seperately. He clearly didn't have this plan when he got up to the cashier, but had decided to wing it. Which left me standing there watching this man's thought process unfold before my eyes. I can say with great confidence he was no rocket scientist. If not for his overly suburban 'I so drive a mini-van' attire I wouldn't have even consider him for the position of rocket janitor.

The rest of the ordeal played out like this:
1) Man decides he wants one item rung up seperately from the other four items. Apparently because there is some sort of rebate involved. He pays with his credit card.
2) Man decides he wants the next two items rung up together, but seperate from the remaining two items.
3) Man changes his mind - Decides he wants the two items seperate from each other. He pays for each item with his credit card.
4) Man decides that the headphones & canned air can be rung up together. Again he reaches for his credit card.

5) Stop the fucking presses - He changes his mind AGAIN. Apparently there might be a rebate on the headphones & those need to be individually rung up as well. Out comes the plastic card of doom. I am pretty sure the magnetic strip has worn off by now. My hostility level has become sufficeintly high enough that I briefly consider grabbing the card from him, slicing his jugular open with it in a Macgyver-esque fashion & then possibly doing a ritual dance in his blood. I figure then he would at least be able to sympathize with how bad my day was going.
6) Finally, we get to the last item: After 2 bags, 5 transactions & 20 some minutes of my life that I will never get back... the end is in sight.

Or so I thought....
With nothing left but a $5.67 can of air, yes AIR as in the shit you breathe for free every second of your life, he stops to contemplate cash or credit? He opts for cash which then leads him to pull out his coin purse looking thing - It was the old man kind that you squeeze and it opens up. Which actually looks wildly similar to a pocket pussy....

After digging around in his coin pussy for what seemed like an eternity he decided he didn't have exact change and gave the woman $6 in cash. So, now I have to wait for change to be made & of course, one more receipt to print.

After the man left I felt it was my duty to voice my frustrations to the cashier. I was hoping for some sort of 'Wasn't he an idiot?' bond to form. Unfortunately, she must have been a cult member in her off time since she didn't seem at all phased by the previous customer.
Then the final kick in the head...The cashier tells me that she could have just printed out multiple copies of the receipt for his rebate forms.

No more weekend shopping for me for awhile. They sell things on the internet for a reason - To keep people like me sane.
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If You Are In Marketing Or Advertising...Kill Yourself

I recently mentioned I have become so irritated with the state of television that I've decided to make my rants on the topic a semi-regular post. Today my beef is primarily with commercials....

Name That Tune...
Maybe I'm getting to the age when you start to notice these things, but I was really depressed to see what music is now backing commercials. I understand there have been many sellouts when it comes to adding music to commercials. However I still expect there to be some relevance between the music & whatever piece of crap product is being sold to me. I also don't want any commercial played so much that I forget there was once a real musician behind the song & that it wasn't always used to hock hemorrhoid cream.

1) Blondie - One Way or Another
Not too long ago I was having a drink at a local martini bar & I heard this song come over the speakers. It occurred to me that my first thought wasn't of Debbie Harry or BCBG's or punk rock. My first though was in fact of the Swiffer. Thinking about dusting while at a bar is depressing. To make it worse I then began to think that things I consider music history to today's kids is nothing more than a jingle for sweeping with little to no meaning in the grand scheme of things.

2) Ann Wilson & Mike Reno - Almost Paradise
Is this a sappy, straight out of the eighties cheesy ballad? Well, yeah. However, it is also the love theme from Footloose. Footloose is one of those classic, so my childhood, girly movies that just happens to hold a special place in my heart. Dancing, young Kevin Bacon & Sarah Jessica Parker, an angry John Lithgow....What more could you want?
Taking that into account, imagine my surprise to hear the song on my TV the other day. I wasn't in the room so I missed the product the song was now being associated with. Luckily, all good commercials are played to death & it was only a matter of time before I got another chance to see it. I have yet to figure out exactly what the point of the commercial is, but I now know it is for M&M's & has something to do with the backseat of a car. Sounds kind of dirty for candy, but then again I put no limit on the lengths marketing people will go to to make a buck. Regardless of what the "plot" is the song has been ruined for me.

3) Tone Loc - Wild Thing
I enjoy this song, but don't really have any profound emotional attachment to it. What I do know is this is probably NOT the song I would choose to represent Mother's Day. Of course I am not the people at Kmart. You read that right - Kmart is celebrating the woman who brought you into this world with a Monsters of Rap classic. I don't know about the rest of you but I can't not resolve buying mom a kmart diamond necklace (as if that isn't bad enough) with the following lyrics:
I keyed the door we cold hit the floor looked up and it was her mother
I didn't know what to say I was hanging by a string
She said "Hey you two I was once like you and I liked to do the wild thing"
I guess it'd be nice to have a sympathetic mom should you get caught having sex, but I think there are better reasons to appreciate my mom.

The Era of Prescription Pimps...
Ok, we have all adjusted to the overly informative yet highly unnecessary prescription drug commercials nowadays. Thanks to these commercials I now know more than I ever wanted to about all kinds of shit. Why just the other day I found out the appropriate term for "My dick won't go down!" is priapism.
The most frustrating part is there is absolutely NO FUCKING REASON for any of these commercials to exist. First off, the ads are for a specific drug, that regardless of how many commercials they run is ONLY available from a doctor. Hopefully a doctor you trust enough to make these recommendations for you. Unless of course you are one of those people who enjoys being brainwashed & actually do believe everything you see on TV.
My next beef is the drugs advertised tend to be expensive, but highly specific. I find it hard to believe that limp dick is as big of a problem as my TV seems to think it is. If erectile dysfunction really is causing a nationwide catastrophe I have some very attractive, fully functioning men I can introduce you to.
Lastly, it irritates me to no end to know that the commercial being played is driving up the costs of already outrageously priced medications. During my recent bout of unemployment I could still afford my doctor & dentist even though I didn't have insurance. Why? Because those are real people who were willing to help me through a rough patch as opposed to forcing me to forgo my health.
Guess what breaks my budget every time I'm without insurance? Prescriptions. At 26 yrs old I have all of three scrips I need - Celexa, Allegra-D & my birth control. Prior to the first two coming out in generic those 3 medications equal approximately $243.97, almost 25% of my monthly income while on unemployment. Even buying generic the total is still upwards of $175 per month. Do you think Walgreens cares if I'm broke? Think the prescription companies would let me pay in installments? Hell no. They have to fund those fucking commercials.

Some of my favorite pill popping commercials...
1) Flomax

First off, is this just the worst name ever for a drug that helps you pee better?
Anyway, Flomax is aimed at men who have a enlarged prostate, but not prostate cancer. What percent of the average TV viewing audience is this going to interest? Are there lots of enlarged prostates running around & I just missed a memo?
Relevance aside, at the end of this commercial when the various side effects are being rambled off (if only I were making this up) it actually says:
"When starting Flomax avoid situations where injury may occur"
I don't know about everyone else, but I try to avoid situations where injury may occur EVERYDAY. Should I incur an injury I'd hope it was not due to my own stupidity or the fact that I forgot to avoid injury that day. Also, in order to avoid all injury you would basically have to lay on the floor of an empty room, not move much & hope no natural disasters hit where you are located.

2) Achoo!
The allergy people love commercials yet somehow seem to come up with the worst marketing stategies. I remember Allegra ran some of the original prescription commercials. During a speed binge I decided to go off for a good 20 minutes about how no one skis on grass whether they have allergies or not. If only I had known then the horror yet to come....
- Astelin: Under no circumstances should I ever be forced to hear grown men singing doowop (while wearing shirts that spell out a word when lined up no less) to a woman stuck in traffic. If that honestly makes you think about seasonal allergies you have bigger problems.
- Nasonex: A French bee can seduce other bees better when not bogged down by his allergies. I realize sex sells, but allergy meds? I think that is stretching it.

Show Me The Money...
The investment commercials are no better. I understand the commercials that are keeping all those former Law & Order stars working. However, the new Charles Schwab ones drive me nuts. They have apparently decided to ditch actual actors & instead voice over these animated investors. I guess that would be ok if the animations reminded me of people. They don't. The "people" in these commercials actually look like bad photographs which have been attacked by someone with a pension for the palette knife photoshop filter.

Usual reality TV ranting...
Because it isn't bad enough we have reality TV shows, we also have to have commercials for them. Two I found particularly troubling:
- Shalom in the Home: The Jew in an RV concept is unnerving enough, but did we have to have the theme song concocted by the same brilliant mind that gave us The Nanny theme?
- King of Cars: This is A&E's latest attempt at a downward spiral in viewership. As if real car salesmen aren't enough to make you chew off your own leg to get away now we get to watch them on TV. The show started airing the first week of April. By the second week of May they were running ads to tune in for 'King of Cars: The Lost Pilot". My first reaction was 'Well, it can't be too lost since you only have five fucking episodes total'. Then I started thinking about the last 'lost pilot' I had seen - Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That one made much more sense to me because A) I didn't know it existed until the 7th/final season of Buffy & B) Oh, yeah that was actually a successful show, with a long run and good writing. King of fucking Cars has been on for ONE MONTH. If they were going to lose something in the first month the show was on I wish it had been the whole fucking cast.

Rant over...I'm sure the TV bitching will continue on a semi-regular basis until I crack & stop paying for cable altogether in an attempt to save my intelligence.
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The Sex, Lies & Employment Trilogy: Part 2

Lies.... I am with the above image on this one: Every silver lining has a cloud. I've never been much of a glass half full kind of girl anyway, but I thought I had found something that shouldn't have much of a downside: Weight Loss.

Getting skinny has a downfall? Oh yes my friends, you have no idea until you get to go through this lovely experience. I am going to share all the things those before & after bastards fail to mention.

My life as a California Raisin:
I remember the first time the penis pump was explained to me from the male perspective. Basically I was told 'You know if you wash a sweater & hang dry it on a hanger it gets all out of shape? There isn't any more sweater there than there was before, it's just all stretched out & distorted so it seems like there is more. Same thing with the penis pump'.
Guess what? The same fucking thing happens when you lose weight! I have enough skin to cover my weight about 50 lbs ago, except I don't need it anymore. If you think that shit just bounces back overnight you are sorely mistaken. I've read shit, talked to people, etc and no one can agree on what my skin will do. Some say I will need plastic surgery to fix it, others say wait a year or two and it will be fine. Fab. So either I win the lotto so I have the expendable income for cosmetic surgery or I spend the next two years waiting to see how much of my deflated ass bounces back.
Do I want the 50 lbs back? No.
Are my clothes smaller & sexier? Yes.
Do I feel better about myself? Maybe...
As long as I'm not butt naked everything passes for okay. However, when naked I look like the aforementioned stretched out sweater. I look like what I am, a deflated fat girl. Now, why on earth do I do a million crunches only to discover I look worse naked than I did before? Losing 50 lbs sounds great on paper, but I'd have thought twice about it if someone had shown me the 'After' picture:

Yep, I have spent the last 6 months working my ass off to end up with body of a dead grape. Fuck, I'm so thrilled.

Crotchless Pants:
Another fun side effect of weight loss is going to buy new clothes. Again, as a woman this should be some sort of fantasy - 'Let me get this straight, everything looks good on me & I constantly need a smaller size than the one I grab? Kick fucking ass'.
Or not.
You may end up like me. I have plateaued in between two sizes. If I go to the larger size, everything sort of fits, but it's baggy. I end up with this sort of corporate raver look that I may have loved 10 years ago, but not so much anymore. I also end up with the top of my pants sticking out. Not because I fill the pants out but because they sit out further than my stomach actually is. I believe this is why people have belts. I've been a fat girl my whole life & do not understand things like belts. Belts are for skinny girls who actually where shirts that allow you to see the top of their pants. Since my belly is still not worth showing anyone I feel no need to own a belt. Thus I'm left with lumpy crotch & pants that hang so loose that I chronically forget to zip them. Since it doesn't seem to improve the fit by zipping them, lately I've just been forgetting the whole step. Probably not a good idea considering I usually go commando.
The other alternative is to choose the smaller size. These clothes look better on me & fit really well if they are more expensive. However since I hope to lose 15 - 20 more pounds at least I don't want to spend too much money on clothes just yet. So I went to Kohls this weekend to find some pants in the price/quality range of greater than Walmart, less than a department store. You know what I found out? If I grab the size 12 it fits everywhere, except for one place....the crotch. Now I'm not sure what happens between the 12 & the 14 in misses exactly, but I know that if I want to wear the 12 which looks nice I have to spend my days with fabric wedged so far up I worry my pants are scraping my cervix. As comfy as living in camel toe hell all day sounds I think it would make me cranky after awhile.
In order to resolve this problem I'm thinking about just buying crotchless pants & hope no one notices.

I am not unhappy about my weight loss. I just feel like I wasn't given the whole story. I mean clothes hide a lot, part of the idea behind this was I was going to look better naked. At the very least I did not expect to look WORSE. I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror before climbing into the shower & I have to stop myself from shrieking out loud in terror.
So beware of cheesy cliches, because regardless of what they say the opposite is also true. If the glass is half full, the other half must be empty. If every cloud has a silver lining, then every silver lining has a cloud. Free lunch be damned.
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The Sex, Lies & Employment Trilogy: Part 1

*The spring fever slot machine*

If your brain looks like the above picture do not panic! You are simply suffering from an affliction known as spring fever. It is okay if your brain only process the following items:
Sex. Food. Sleep. Repeat as needed.

As of late I too have been suffering from what is commonly known as 'Spring Fever' (aka Mating Season). I think this is one of the best & worst things about living somewhere with four seasons. I enjoy the natural high of winter turning to spring. However, it tends to cause behavioral changes usually only associated with people known to have a major mental illness.

Do you have spring fever? Not sure? Well, in order to help people self diagnose the dreaded spring fever I will share my unmistakable symptoms.

Major Symptoms:
1) Sleeplessness.
The strong desire to run around like a speed freak until you can no longer see straight. Most likely you will have no particular task in mind. You just have to 'do stuff'.
2) Mini hibernation.
Following up the bursts of energy with naps, not just any old nap either - I'm talking the sleep of the dead. Keep a pillow handy at all times.
3) The overwhelming desire to hump things.
Boys, pillows, doorknobs...whatever crosses your path pretty much. Trust me, that is not a gun in his pocket, he is happy to see you. This is the time of year when one is most likely to engage in (& should embrace) lots of random hot sexual acts. During spring one's libido is in fact not within the owner's control. It is actually being toyed with by fate. Personally, I think this is evolution's little joke to see just how far you can push the hormones of your average person before they crack.
4) Deviant Behavior.
Aside from the food, sex & sleep there is the compulsion towards reckless endeavors. I recently found out my cousin (the mechanic) gets a killer discount on new Mazdas from the dealership he works at. My gut reaction was to have the place write up the papers on a brand new Mazdaspeed6 with all the toys - Black leather, 6 speed, rims, spoiler, 275 horsepower turbo in cherry mica. Mmmm, fun. Like an orgasm with tires...
I did manage to refrain for the time being. Instead I redirected my need to buy something frivolous towards a less expensive toy. I reserved my Nintendo DS Lite & new Mario game this weekend. Not exactly the same, but it managed to satisfy my craving for something I don't really need & there was roughly a $30k savings that came along with my decision.

Minor Symptoms:
1) A radical shift in the music on your playlists.
For example I had Breathe by Anna Nalick at the top of my list. Just a few short weeks ago my life was in fact an hourglass glued to the table. Now, for completely inexplicable reasons I find the theme to Fame at the top of my list. Yes, in 'I want to live forever, Fame'.
2) Everything that blooms or grows seems amazing.
At no other time of the year will you see a dandelion & think it is a beautiful flower set before you like a gift from god. Under normal circumstances one would look at a dandelion & think 'Fucking weed, you are the cause of my allergies, the scourge of the earth & may even bring on the downfall of humanity'.
3) Weather leaves the realm of reality & becomes a mental phenomenon.
So, even though it is 45 degrees & pouring rain you drive with the window rolled down. Why? Because in your head you know that it is May & therefore you can drive with the windows down. Granted you still have the heat in the car cranked to full blast & a parka on, but god dammit, it's SPRING!!!
4) Spring Cleaning.
This term is a misnomer. It implies that in the spring people aspire to tidy up a little. False. Spring cleaning is when you want to throw everything you own out & start over. Alternately you are compelled to fantasize about gigantic household projects. For example, you decide that every room in the house must be painted. I don't care if you just painted last week, you still want to paint everything. You may also find yourself saying things like 'It's time to start on that 10,000 sq ft addition I've been thinking about.' Be warned, your motivation for these projects will wane quickly, so be careful what you start and for godsake avoid the Home Depot at all costs!

If you have any or all of these symptoms you are most likely suffering from spring fever. I recommend you enjoy the hell out of it while it lasts!!
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Naughty Blogger! Spankings For You

Yes, I have been a horrible blogger the last few weeks. Somewhere between the job interviews, slightly paranoid delusions & mass quantities of working out I have failed to post. I am pretty sure my scattered brain is back in check now. I have a million half posts floating around my head, but it is officially time to get my blog shit back together.

The strategy is to dive back in with my Sex, Lies & Employment trilogy. I also have some theories on the apocalypse I need to share (and have been researching for months so I better get a damn post out of it). I am also working on my '100 Things' list that everyone seems to have. Hopefully that will be my hundredth post - A milestone I am determined to meet. Plus I am still very angry at the television & have decided much like BEG has the news I need to give regular updates on how stupid TV has become.

Wish me luck, feel free to spank me if I don't comply with this post and enjoy the following bit of wisdom:
"Coffee without caffeine is like sex without the spanking."
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"Legano, Ni Legano...Is Gray Area"

So, it could be just me, but isn't the whole immigration protest thing seem like stupidity at its finest? Who knew you could protest in defense of your right to be able to break the law? I guess it never occurred to me, because it is one of the stupidest ideas I have ever heard! Granted if these illegal workers had a high school diploma they might actually understand concepts like illegal & criminal.
If I understand this correctly people who are NOT citizens are upset that OUR government wants to increase penalties for ILLEGAL immigration. Also known as breaking the fucking law. Now, I am no Republican or government loving freak. I hate patriotism & Dubya...all of it. However, as a citizen I get to have those opinions. Not a citizen? Guess you can't play in this game.

These protestors are actually using our constitution to stand up for rights they don't have, because oh yeah - THEY ARE NOT FUCKING CITIZENS. Then there are the people walking out on behalf of their illegal relatives. What is this shit? Now we have protesting by proxy?

"Mom, dad I know you are here illegally. So I am going to ditch Algebra in protest of you breaking the law"

As far as I can tell illegal immigrants basically view getting into the country as some sort of competition they have won. As the winners, they get to screw with the system since, well they made it in to the US. One of the arguments I've seen the most is "You can't go arrest 11 million people, so why bother to change the law?"
Is it just me or is this the dumbest logic ever? Wouldn't it be nice to use this logic every time someone was charged with a crime?

Rapists: "Well, your Honor, since I already raped her don't you think I should get off (no pun intended)? I mean maybe if you had got to me before the whole sodomy with an object happened I could see you being upset. However, what's done is done so why don't we just call this one even?"

Murderers: "I already killed the person & since I can't make him any less dead I'm thinking 'no harm, no foul'. I'd love to go to prison and all, but it doesn't really fit into my schedule. Oh, and if you disagree I'm getting all the other murderers together & we are going to protest!"

Speaking of dumb, logic & algebra - For anyone who may be empathizing with these people I'd like to point out that they are not an addition to this country. Half of illegal workers don't have a high school education. One third don't even have a ninth grade education. Many of the female immigrants don't work period because they are at home tending to their litter of offspring who are probably not going to end up much better off than their parents.
As for those stay at home immigrant women panicking about who is going to support them if their illegal (damn, there is that word again) husbands get deported? Maybe I'm being a crazy feminazi liberal here, but umm, how about YOU?!? What are these women incapable of getting a job like the rest of us? It isn't like that immigrant farm wage has them living in Beverly Hills. I doubt it would be all that difficult to get a job making a wage comparable to fruit picker. Though I could be ignorant. It's possible fruit pickers are pulling in six figures and I missed the boat by going to college.
Speaking of offspring...or alternately their impact on the population. In my heavily Hispanic area I have yet to meet a small Hispanic family. Trust me, they have the Catholics beat on the whole be fruitful & multiply thing. Anyway, I found this interesting statistic:
"The US population is expected to increase at an astounding rate. In 1990 it was 249 million; now it is 298 million; by 2050 it is expected to be 420 million. That is a jump of 70%, or 170 million, in only 60 years. The rate already eclipses the record 1910 wave of European immigration."
How much growth do you think one country can handle? In terms of resources, jobs, etc...There simply is not enough for us to be letting anyone who is bored with their country come to ours. There are enough troubles with the education system & class sizes in my area, not to mention water & electricity shortages and number of jobs. Are we just going to stretch the system until it breaks so that we too can become a third world country?

From what I have read the bills floating around want to do things like make it a felony to be in the country illegally, make drunk driving a deportable offense & still give these people a chance to become citizens IF they pay fines, back taxes, learn English & pass a background check. Umm, where is the radical injustice in that? I have to pass a background check to get a job. I have to pay taxes. I get fined if I don't pay taxes. I am not allowed to drink & drive.

Oh my fucking god what a radical notion! Our government wants to treat these people as if they were just like the rest of us!

Here in Wisconsin the big immigration issue has to do with driver's licenses. Yep, illegal workers are upset because they would have to prove they are legal residents in order to get a license. Well, the nerve of my state politicians. They only want legal residents getting licenses. Damn them.
As far as I know we are one of the only states who doesn't already require this. In turn this has made Wisconsin a hot spot for illegal residents to get a license. Great, we are known for beer, brats, cheese and now supporting law breakers. My state has a bad enough rep ok? I don't mind having some notorious people: Dahmer, Ed Gein, Lawerencia Bembenek...but Disneyland for illegal immigrants who need ID isn't on the top ten list of things I want for my state.
The arguments being made against the bill are totally asinine. Clearly the aliens left their common sense in their other pants when they immigrated.....
"Right now, my license is my life. Without a driver's license you're going to feel like every cop is going to stop you." said Miguel Serna of Ft Atkinson, who came to America in 1986 and now works as a welder & a clown (Laugh, that is a hysterical combo).
So let me get this straight: You have no fears, issues or worries about being in the country for 20 years illegally, but are paralyzed with fright over not having a license? Talk about warped priorities. More importantly, a driver's license is like a SSN, it gets you everywhere. Jobs, bank accounts, loans, everything and anything can be done if you have a license. Rarely have I been asked to show my birth certificate or passport to anyone. Bars, jobs, police, etc - All they care about is that license. So if you can get one, what incentive do you have to become legal? Apparently Miguel could care less about being a citizen, but is very worried about being able to drive from home to those welding/clown gigs.

I have actually dealt with the illegal workforce myself. They are popular in the horse world as grooms & shit shovelers. I promise not one of them was here to improve America. They knew English, but refused to speak it & never paid a dime in taxes. They all had a five year plan that involved sending cash back to Mexico for awhile, then going home to retire like kings. A lowly horse groomer here usually owned a whole farm back in Mexico. I don't have a farm. Do you? The people I knew weren't concerned with things like taxes or voting. It wasn't about contributing it was about abusing. I am not really thrilled with the idea of being a cash cow for a country with a shitty dollar value. Granted, I'd probably take advantage of a system like our current one too. Not like getting caught does any harm. At the barn we'd have usually about 5 illegal grooms here who all came over on the same visa. One would get here & they would just mail it back home for the next Juan Doe to show up.
Hell, I can't even get a job because so many in my field are being outsourced to India but I am suppose to feel bad for someone because they broke into this country by clinging to the top of a train or weaving a reed boat hoping to drift to a US shoreline? Not happening.

And now, because that might change all of sudden these people are ready to participate in the democratic process? Fuck that.
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I Go Through Two Lighters A Day!

I am one of those smokers who actually enjoys smoking. I may have contemplated quitting for ohhh, about 2 hours one day. I decided against it. Being a smoker I also tend to revel in the irony of things like non-smokers who die of lung cancer. The most recent example being Dana Reeves. Non-smokers who die of lung cancer support my belief that when your number is up it's up. It's right up there with being killed by a falling icicle. Fate is fate and smoking is probably not the end all, be all determinant regardless of what people would like you to believe. If smoking, drinking & drugs were an automatic death sentence, then explain Keith Richards. On the flip side of that, explain the olympic athletes who just arbitrarily dropped dead. Besides, I have yet to meet an immortal non-smoker.

It may sound cruel to revel in another's death, but it takes the edge off my irritation with this country's neverending quest to fuck with my ability to smoke. I mean I realize there are still illiterate children, homeless people & that pesky Iraq conflict going on, but clearly the government believes my cigarette smoking is going to be the downfall of humanity.
I already go outside! What more do you fucking want? It isn't crack, it's a marlboro and is what keeps from killing 50% of all people I come in contact with so I highly recommend letting me light up.

Anyway, I have recently discovered a new spin on the whole smoking issue. Believe it or not, smoking may be good for you! I know what all you non-smokers are thinking right now: Smoking? Beneficial? That is crazy talk!

So I have come armed with supporting evidence....

Case#1: Quit smoking & get a disease!
My cousin who recently turned 27 has been diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. Sounds pleasant hey? All I know is my aunt has now shared way too much information about my cousin's colon with me - The enemas, scopes, color pictures & do it yourself poop smears. It also means he will be on medication for the rest of his life or possibly end up with surgery.
It's sort of a strange disease in terms of what causes it - As far as researchers know it is caused by a combination of genes, a person's immune system & environmental factors. They also believe that emotional stresses can cause flareups.
Shortly before the disease appeared my cousin decided to quit smoking for what I swear is at least the 5th time. I even gave him shit about it at Christmas asking how long it would last this time.
The best part of all this? His doctor told him that quitting smoking may have caused his current bout of problems. Not only is there an emotional stress tied to quitting smoking, but apparently doctors have found that smokers with UC have less problems. They think something with the nicotine keeps it at bay.
Whoo hoo! Score one for the smokers!

Case#2: Who smokes more than the Chinese?
Well, maybe middle easterners, but that is beside the point. After hearing about my cousin I came across this article claiming there are redeeming things in cigarettes:
Holy smoke! Chinese city turns cigarettes to medicine
Apparently they have found a component of cigarettes called solanesol that helps treat cardiovascular disease.

Case#3: Sex Doesn't Have To Be Terminal!
I guess it was just the week to be a smoker. Black people get a month, women get a month & it appears the last week was an ode to the benefits of smoking. Who knew?
My last enlightening article is this one:
Do Plants Have The Potential To Vaccinate Against HIV?
It talks about using genetically modified tobacco to create an HIV vaccine. How fucking cool is that? Talk about the ultimate slap in the face! The evil tobacco monster being used to vaccinate against HIV?
If it ever came to fruition I'd want everyone of those morons (smokers & non-smokers alike) who sued a tobacco company to line up at Philip Morris' door & apologize for being a pretentious idiot, for bitching that a picture of a camel could lead to the collapse of America & for not owning up to the fact that smoking is a personal choice.
I want the freedom to light up. However should I get lung cancer or emphysema I am not going to blame the tobacco companies. If I get into a car accident can I sue Mazda for making a nice car that I wanted to buy & drive around in? Please.

If you are a non-smoker who is all ready to berrate me with a comment or even just someone who appreciates a good laugh, I leave you with the following bit on smoking by the late Bill Hicks:
I smoke, if this bothers anyone, I recommend you looking around the world in which we live and... shutting your fucking mouth. Either that or suffer a facial burn, your choice. After all this is America, land of freedom, so you have that option ahead of you.

I now realize I smoke for simply one reason, and that is spite. I hate you non-smokers with all of my little black fucking heart, you obnoxious, self-righteous, whining little fucks, my biggest fear if I quit smoking, is that I'll become one of you. Now don't take that wrong.

How many non-smokers do we have here tonight? By round of applause, non-smokers. A few of you. Good, 'cause I have something to tell you. I do. I have something to tell you non-smokers, and this is for you and you only, because I know for a fact that you don't know this. And I feel it's my duty to pass on information at all times, so that we can all learn, evolve, and get the fuck off this planet. Non-smokers, this is for you and you only, ready?
Non-smokers die every day.
Sleep tight.

See, I know you entertain some kind of eternal life fantasy because you do not smoke cigarettes. May I be the first to pop that little fucking bubble of yours, and send you hurtling back to the truth? You're dead too. Have a good evening. And you know what doctors say, "Shit, if only you smoked, we'd have the technology to help you! It's you people dying from nothing that are screwed."

I got all sorts of neat gadgets waiting for me, man.
Oxygen tent, iron lung - it's like going to Sharper Image! Major rationalizations...

We live in such a weird culture, man. Does anyone remember this, when Yul Bryner died, and came out with that commercial after he was dead? "I'm Yul Bryner and I'm dead now."
What the fuck's this guy selling? I'm all ears.
"I'm Yul Bryner and I'm dead now, because I smoked cigarettes."

Okay, pretty scary. But they coulda done that with anyone. They coulda done it with that Jim Fixx guy, too, remember that guy, that health nut who died while jogging? I don't remember seeing his commercial!

"I'm Jim Fixx and I'm dead now. And I don't know what the fuck happened. I jogged every day, ate nothing but tofu, swam five hundred laps every morning, and I'm dead. Yul Bryner drank, smoke, and got laid every night of his life. He's dead. Shit! Yul Bryner's smokin', drinkin', girls are sitting on his cueball noggin, every night of his life! I'm running around a dewy track at dawn. And we're both fucking dead! Yul used to pass me on his way home in the morning, big long limousine, two girls blowing him, cigarette in one hand, drink in the other....One day that life is going to get to you, Yul."

They're both dead.
Yeah, but what a healthy looking corpse you were, Jim. Look at the hamstrings on that corpse! Look at the sloppy grin on Yul's corpse! Yul Bryner lived his life. Sure, he died a 78-pound stick figure, okay. There are certain drawbacks.

People'll say the stupidest things sometimes too, "Hey, man, if you quit smoking you get your sense of smell back." I live in New York City, I got news for you-I don't want my fucking sense of smell back.

(Sniffs) "Is that urine? (Sniffs) I think I smell a dead guy! Honey, look, a dead guy! Covered in urine, check this out! Someone just pee'd on this guy, that's fresh. Just think, if I'd been smoking I never would have found him! A urine-covered dead fella, what're the odds? Thank God I quit smoking, now I can enjoy the wonders of New York, honey, look!"

"I'm Bill Hicks and I'm dead now because I smoked cigarettes. Cigarettes didn't kill me, a bunch of non-smokers kicked the shit out of me one day.
I tried to run, they had more energy than I.
I tried to hide, they heard me wheezing.
Many of them smelled me.
(Sniffing sounds) "There he is, get him!" (Pants) "Oh, he's hardly fucking moving, this is pathetic!" (Pants) "Look, he's still trying to get away, he's like a roach, step on him!" (Pants) "Squash him!" "Let's kill him and pee on him. Yeah!"
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Well, It Is The Lord's Day

You know sometimes you just shouldn't click on web ads. Being in IT I should know these things. However, sometimes the temptation is overwhelming & even I can not help myself....

Click if you dare!

For those who didn't brave the link I will explain:

Kinky Christians!

I may have my quirks, but this was a little much. I think I'd have been ok except I went to the site's Cafe Press store. I know there are communities for just about everything, but the whole BDSM/Jesus Freak combo continues to fly over my head. I guess I'm just lucky I'm an Atheist. However, I am tempted to join just to investigate this phenomenon further.

To add insult to irony I stumbled onto the Kinky Christians shortly after getting this personal ad response:
Mistress, I am a 57 year old submissive, white and divorced male, living in Beloit. I am college educated (Carroll) and hold a master's degree in theology -- I am also ordained.
I wear panties. Six feet tall. 195 pounds.
Obedient. Love to be put over knee and spanked
Can travel. Please email direct at ****
Naughty Johnny
Ahh, there is a dream date if I ever saw one....An old, MINISTER, who wears panties. I wonder if his parishoners know about this. How would he explain it if they did? I mean how do you pass off wearing panties & enjoying spankings as the lord's work?

Some days it is particularly clear to me why I am usually single. I'm also reminded why that isn't a bad thing.
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Full Moon Tuesday

I am by nature a girl of science. However there are those few things I get flaky & superstitious about: I've been known to read my horoscope, I think weird things happen during the full moon & I have a pathological fear of Tuesdays. Call me crazy if you like, but I'm telling you if you pay attention you will find Tuesday to be a notoriously bad day of the week. At my last job I explained my Tuesday issues to several coworkers & guess what? Within a short period of time they too were Anti-Tuesday converts (My ability to convert non-believers is what gives me faith in the whole amendment thing).

All that being said yesterday was not only Tuesday, but there was a full moon. WHY WAS I NOT WARNED BEFORE LEAVING THE HOUSE?!?!

Thanks to my lack of income I tend not to go out much. Ok, I actually don't leave the house unless it's on fire or to get coffee in the morning. Notably I think the coffee shop may be my next place of employment.

Anyway, about 4pm my mom's old hippie boyfriend tells me they are going out for Mexican food & invites me along. I stupidly say 'Sounds great, I'd love to go'. The following things proceed to happen during the approximately 75 minutes I was absent from the safety of my home:

1) The Beer Nabbing Bum
I live in a suburb, but the more hick than pretentious kind. We have several quirks. One is that the population is pretty much 50/50 white people & Hispanics (this would be why you can get good Mexican in bumble fuck, WI). However, should any of us see a black person we all think 'Is he lost? Milwaukee is the other way'. We don't have a homicide rate because we might average a half a murder a year. Instead we get odd crime. Not quite as odd as the great pink flamingo stealing from the church lawn (That would be in BEG's hometown). Still Waukesha is not what one refers to as a 'rough neighborhood' by any means.
Another wonderfully Waukesha quirk is we have notoriously narrow driveways into places with enormous dips at the bottom. It's as if they designed the town around fucking up the bottom of your car. Texas has too many speed bumps, New Jersey has no left turns and Waukesha has it's funky driveways. Imagine my surprise when I got to merge these 2 things together. Yep, crime & bad city planning all in one.

The Hippie & I take the SUV over to the Mexican place (Casa del rio) to meet mom. Casa has one of the stupid Waukesha driveways that is exactly wide enough for your vehicle & has concrete buildings on both sides to ensure your captivity. As he turns in we are immediately confronted by a stonewash jean clad ass of some guy. By his inability to get up off the ground I initially assumed the man was hurt. At second glance however I see a bag. In the bag is part of a six pack of beer. Like any good Wisconsinite these aren't those wimpy 12 ounce cans, no this is like a six pack of forties. Had I been driving it would have been at this point that I threw the car in reverse & parked elsewhere. As a woman even the most inebriated man may pose a threat if agitated. So instead of waiting to be the star of 'When Drunks Attack' I'd simply have removed myself from the area.
Not the Hippie though. Nope, he waits patiently while the bum goes about his business. As I watched the man who was about 3 feet in front of our bumper I realized not only was he not injured, but instead his issue was apparently that one of his beers had escaped from the bag. While trying to stand up more of his beers tumbled out of the bag in an effort to save themselves from the fate of this man. Already so drunk he couldn't stand & rather oblivious to our presence the man proceeds to crawl on his hands & knees from the right of the driveway to directly in front of us and then over to his beer. Having rescued the precious Budweiser, we now have to wait for him to crawl back out of our path. Again this takes him some amount of time. Using the concrete building on the right he manages to stumble off into the sunset. Did I mention he was this hammered at 530pm on a Tuesday? Apparently he doesn't like them either.
After the 10 minute performance by the drunk we pull through to the back where the parking lot lives. I casually glance off to my right & see a door I had never noticed. It blended into the building except for it's 3 makeshift 2x4 steps. It also didn't appear to go anywhere. Apparently though the bum knew something I didn't, because there he was slumped on the stairs. Still clutching his beer he is reaching up to knock on the door. If you have never watched a grown man reach up to knock on the very bottom of a door I highly recommend it. Wildly amusing.

2) Memory Lane
Finally we park & duck safely through the back door into the restaurant. Except in some apparent effort to mess with me as we reach the hostess area to get seated it becomes apparent that something is not right. Oh, yeah - Since the last time I was there they had moved a wall!
I persevere onward to our table & order a magarita. My mom having parked on the street pops in through the front door. She joins us & announces there is a cop outside with some guy who needs a bath. I then explain to her that we are already old friends with the crazy drunk who is now chatting with our local authorities. Though I can't imagine it was a very productive conversation.

My mom has barely sat down when I hear 'Amanda!'. As usual my first thought is 'Are those the voices in my head?'. I turn around & directly behind me is my old best friend Julie. When I say old I mean I met this girl when I was like 10 or 11 yrs old. We both rode at the same barn that had no indoor plumbing. Nothing builds character at 10 faster than using a port-a-potty at 6am in January. One of my biggest fears as a child was actually that I'd freeze to the seat ala why you aren't suppose to lick poles when it's freezing out.
It later dawned on me that means I have known her for about 15 yrs which made me feel really old.
We had a very 13 year old girl type of falling out over another mutual friend Charlene. The two of them eventually moved to another barn without me & I was left out in the cold. Ironically, my spot in the clique was filled by my current best friend Adrianna (aka - BEG). It was literally like she was the applicant they chose to fill my spot in the group dynamic. I guess it sort of explains why her & I ended up really good friends. I took the 11-13 yr old shift and Adrianna took the 14 - 16 yr old shift. Then her & I ended up at the same barn. If you haven't noticed horses, more specifically American Saddlebreds, is a small group chalk full of politics, barn hopping, sexual escapades & an overall general sleaziness.
Fast forward to present day....Julie & I were exchanging the usual pleasantries when I realized she was ten times the loser I was. Plus, she is still really close to Charlene so I got the double whammy update. I couldn't help but do the happy 'payback is a bitch' dance in my head.

The lowdown on Julie's life...
Job? I may be unemployed, but at least when employed I have what passes for a career. She never finished college & has three jobs. She tells me she is still at the Land's End Outlet (where she has now been folding flannel shirts for the last 8 years), she works for her parents business (though I don't recall them having one) and she works at the local Acura dealership. Trying to not to say anything totally tactless I ask what she does over at Acura assuming she does like part time office work or something. Nope, she without hesitation says 'I clean the cars!'. It took all of my willpower not to blurt out 'I thought they only hired Mexicans to do that'.

Somewhat shocked at her patheticness I move on to the marriage question. Not only is she not married, but she still lives at home too. Whoo hoo! I am not the only one! On top of that the guy with her was a large, imposing Mexican Mafioso looking Hispanic who didn't say a word to me. So, if he was more than a platonic friend I also get bonus points for landing way better guys.

And then there is Charlene. Charlene comes from money. I don't mean wealthy, I mean her dad's favorite hobby is collecting Ferraris rich. Though honestly a great family. I knew them well & they are actually fairly low key rich.
Charlene is working for her parents as well in the accounting department. Of course, Julie said in the accounting department, not actually an accountant. That was sort of a given though. Her older brother wanted nothing to do with the business, so it landed on her.
As for marriage? Charlene was always really pretty. Guys just sort of fell at her feet. She is the embodiment of petite, blonde & rich. Yeah, I wish I had it so rough. So that made Julie's answer all the better. With a downward look towards the floor she tells me Charlene was engaged but "that didn't work out". The body language alone screamed huge fucking disaster. I'd like to fancy it was something as tragic as left at the alter, but I don't actually know.

Don't get me wrong, these girls were a huge part of my life & I don't wish them any ill will. However, sometimes an ego stroking is just what a girl needs.

After dinner I climbed into mom's car and when I looked ahead I saw the moon in all it's full glory. Well, there you have it. The explanation for my very weird 75 minute Tuesday adventure was right in front of me. Next time I think about leaving the house on a Tuesday I will be sure to check the moon's cycle.
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Faking It

Ah, if only I were talking about orgasms....At least those are something I don't have to fake. Nope, I am actually referring to the latest twists & turns in my unending quest for employment.

Most of February was dead in terms of the job hunt. I don't mean slow either. I mean dead as in I'd get better responses from the people in the local Sunnyside cemetery dead. I continue to dutifully hock my resume, send out applications, etc to no avail. Occasionally I get a rejection letter for a job I interviewed for 3 months ago, but other than that nothing.

Convinced I am doing something 'wrong' in my job search I like to read articles for tips & tricks to aid in my search. I have to say there is some depressing news out there about job hunting. However, the most disturbing by far was this article about embellishing one's resume. I was shocked to learn that over 50% of all people lie on their resume. Some articles I read put it as high as 75%. Well, shit no wonder I don't have any sort of edge. I'm too busy being honest.

It also claims that fudging your resume can come back to haunt you. Except, it references people who got awfully damn far lying on their resumes. Think FEMA's Michael Brown & Radioshack CEO David Edmondson. Oh yeah, lying on their resumes really screwed them. Like these people didn't make enough money before they got caught for it to really matter. Much like Enron, I have a distinct 'Too little, too late' feeling about the whole thing. Plus, they may have lied before, but now these people have the actual experience they wanted to put on a resume. Edmondson doesn't have to lie now because he actually was the CEO of Radioshack. I'd say that looks pretty good on a resume.

I'm not big on lying. As a matter of fact I suck at it which forces me to be honest 99.9% of the time. So this seems radically unfair (for lack of a better term) to me. Thanks to this article I was sent off into the world of faking resumes. There are sites that will dummy up a resume for you. Hell, even ones that will give you a fake degree & have a phone number so employers can verify it. Clearly if there are people out there taking advantage of this shit it is not surprising why I have absolutely no edge over other candidates.

Now, everything you read from HR people says they always find out or it will come back and bite you in the end, but I don't really buy that having been in the throes of the job hunt for the last 7 months. I can count on one hand the number of people who requested my job references. Out of those I think maybe one employer actually called them. You are your piece of paper.

I'm not naive. I understand there are people who lie on their resumes, but the high number of people doing it simply astounded me. So, where does that leave me? Apparently still unemployed & totally fucked.

Irritated by the whole you should lie more fiasco I continued reading job hunting articles. I think the psychic's guide to finding a job is my all time favorite. I guess if I can't get a job by lying I should at least get me one of them Court TV psychics to tell me it's all going to be ok.

The other line I'm sick of hearing is that it's my area. I am suffering from a horrible location. Here in Wisconsin the term "brain drain" pops up every few years. We are home to one of the best universities in the country - UW Madison. However, once people are done with school they run for the border faster than a taco bell commercial. We rank 7th in exporting college graduates & 49th in importing them. 49th? Out of 50? What that tells me is I am not in the right state for smart people. The ones who do get jobs get them because they know somebody, not because they are talented or even qualified for a job. Now I know about 60% of jobs are gotten through networking. Umm, yeah that is great if you have a network. I am 26 & probably one of the only people my age I know with an actual resume. My network consists of mostly tortured artists who have day jobs to fund their wild aspirations of doing things like making it big with the band or sailing around the world on a boat because it would be 'cool'. So unless I aspire to fry cook my network isn't really going to do me much good.

Then there is money. Graduates who leave Wisconsin for full time jobs earn almost 25% more than those who stay. The irony of all this is that I am currently unemployed & therefore I don't have the money to move out of my sinking ship of a state. Again I feel unemployed & totally fucked.

So here I am with no job in a state that doesn't appreciate educated people, shopping for psychics & good liars. This is not what was in the brochure.

As a new approach I've decided to open up my resume to the people who read my blog. Any tips, lies or jobs you'd like to offer I am all ears.
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Ok, So Even I Go Girl Once In Awhile

I confess. There are a few things that turn me into one of those starry eyed, looking for the knight in shining armor, giddy girl types. Much like the final scene in Dirty Dancing will for all time be able to instantly entrance me, so does figure skating. Yep, skinny girls in tacky costumes spinning in circles really does it for me.

When I was a kid I actually took ice skating lessons for awhile. However, the rink I went to was closing, so in order for me to continue my parents would have to shell out more cash for lessons. At the time I had also started horseback riding lessons. So, I was given a choice: Ponies or frozen water. Lucky for me I went with horses. At 4 or 5 years old you really don't have any clue what kind of body you are going to end up with. I have a body much more suited to going 3 rounds with a 2000 lb horse. My big feet, big ass, tall German Gypsy frame with big tits? Yeah, not really cut out for the delicate sport of figure skating.

Despite my own shortcomings as a potential figure skater I still watch skating with great amazement. All that spinning, jumping & what not. It all looks so beautiful. Well, all of it except ice dancing. Much like curling, I don't really get ice dancing. As far as I can tell it's pairs skating for people who can't jump. Last night the one thing I find remotely interesting about the Winter Olympics was finally on: The ladies short program.

First Place: Sasha Cohen
Sasha seems to have come a long way since 2002. The last time around I was on the Sarah Hughes bandwagon. I honestly thought she was the best. Plus I am a sucker for the underdog. However, whatever 'it' is that I thought was missing from Sasha's skating four years ago is there now. She skated great & demonstrated more showmanship than most of the other skaters combined. Of course now the question is can she hold it together through the long program?

Second Place: Irina Slutskaya
Technically she is a great skater. However, she just screams butch to me. Not necessarily lesbian butch, but certainly not what I think of when I think of figure skaters. Add in her pants suit getup? Ugh. Wasn't the men's skating last week?

The Other Americans: Kimmie Meissner & Emily Hughes
I loved Kimmie's short program. At barely 16 she lacks some of the polish of the older skaters, but give her a few years though & I think she will rise up. As for Emily, I thought she skated nicely. However, I couldn't shake the 'Your sister is better' feeling I got watching her. I will say I'm glad she made the team over Michelle Kwan. At some point you have to cut your losses & run. Kwan's pathetic quest for a gold medal has just gotten old. She has become so desperate to win the gold that it has started to negate her other accomplishments. I can't recall any of her performances off the top of my head, but her begging to go to the Olympics & making the team even with an injury? Now that sticks in my mind. Get over yourself already.

One final thought on the short program: Outfits.
Who the hell dressed these girls? Most of them look like Bob Mackie threw up on them. The chronic use of neon colors was very unnerving. I thought neon died with the eighties. What next? Fanny packs become all the rage again? On top of that there seemed to be an all or nothing mentality. Either the skaters were in outfits so skimpy I thought 'Netting or not, Why bother?' or they were covered from head to toe like some skating Eskimo. Can you say middle ground?

The Best: Fumie Suguri
I loved her costume. I also thought she skated far better than her counterpart Shizuka Arakawa who end up just ahead of Fumie in third place. I'm also positive that Arakawa has quite possibly the flattest chest I have ever seen on a woman. I am talking concave boobs.

The Worst: Sokolova & LiashenkoWork that tacky neon girls!

The Worst, Part 2: Gimazetdinova & AndoNaked vs. Nanook of the North

KP will return to her regularly scheduled sarcasm shortly...
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